We’re at a point in history when, if gamers are to maintain credibility, we need to acknowledge both the good and bad in our passion. Grand Theft Childhood ($25, Simon & Schuster) by Lawrence Kutner and Cheryl K. Olson is a fair and comprehensive study of games and violence, and we would do well to pay attention to its conclusions.
Nvidia is preparing to roll out full support for hardware accelerated physics on its high end graphics cards including the 9800 & 200 series. New beta drivers which enable this functionality can now be found using the advanced driver search tool. Version 177.39 installs PhysX drivers that will enable the graphics card to emulate Ageia hardware. Physics acceleration is part of Nvidia’s new CUDA initiative aimed at convincing gamers that graphics hardware is more capable and valuable then CPU’s. Games of note that currently support PhysX include Gears of War, Mass Effect, Rainbow Six Vegas, and Unreal Tournament 3. The list of supported titles is expected to grow exponentially as Nvidia rolls this feature out to older hardware in the coming months.
Hit the jump to learn how to really put PhysX to the test.
Prepare thy frozen orbs. Blizzard unveiled one additional feature at this year's Worldwide Invitational to absolutely no fanfare whatsoever. The company of the hour has now updated its direct-download service to include both Diablo II and Diablo II: Lord of Destruction. Simply head on over to the Blizzard store, search your closet for the old CD box, and input the accompanying key. You'll unlock the ability to download both Windows and Mac versions of the game as many times as you desire. And the store itself now keeps track of your CD key.
Blizzard has officially announced its long anticipated sequel in the Diablo franchise to great fanfare at the Worldwide Invitational Event in Paris. This finally puts to rest the flurry of rumors that Diablo would be the next Blizzard property to enter the MMO arena. Blizzard’s decision to return to it’s roots is a pretty safe bet, but early game play footage reveals that this new iteration of the cult classic is far more then just a simple graphical update.
Click through to the jump to learn more about the game play and technical changes you can expect.
Today, I had an epiphany: E3 is going to be a snooze-fest. Blizzard is making their big announcement tomorrow, most every PC game at the show will just be a high-res console port, and apparently Half-Life 2 Episode 3 won't even have a presence. Soon after, however, I stumbled over a piece that lightly patted me on the shoulder and assuaged all of my fears. Jump past the break for said piece and its bionic arm -- plus more!
Microsoft has once again furnished proof of the abysmal levels of concern it has for Xbox 360 owners and their plethora of console related woes. It took MS a whole year to come up with a fix for the flawed Xbox Live Arcade DRM.
Gamers who upgraded their console or replaced it – for obvious reasons – could not play the arcade titles, they had previously bought, while offline. They had to be online to play the games. But MS has eventually made amends and fixed the flawed DRM in form of an online tool. Is Xbox 360 the most flawed gadget of the last gazillion years? A ‘yes’ would not be taken as an exaggeration if you have endured a “Red Ring of Death.”
Buoyed by the early promise of its ATI Radeon HD 4850 card, AMD expects its discrete graphics card market share to reach 40% in Q3, 2008 up from 30% at the beginning of this year. The performance-oriented HD 4850 is an absolute steal for $199 and most industry watchers expect it to tear into the market held by $200-300 card.
The launch of the HD 4850 left Nvidia with no choice but to drop the price of its GeForce 9800 GTX+ from $229 to $199. But when AMD decides to cut Radeon HD 4850’ price – a long way off – sales will get a huge boost.
In a recent interview, Crytek CEO Cevat Yerli blasted the PC industry as "the most intensely pirated market ever." By his own estimation, Yerli believes the sales-to-piracy ratio could be as high as 1 to 20, or in other words, for every videogame legitmately sold, 20 more are illegally downloaded or copied.
Yerli also critiqued certain aspects of Crysis. Click through the jump to see what he had to say, and what to expect differently from Crysis Warhead.
In the July issue, I tested HP’s Mini-Note—the small, cheap notebook is HP’s answer to the subcompact, sub-$500 Asus Eee PC. HP’s tiny notebook got me thinking about the point of diminishing PC returns—the point at which adding more hardware oomph doesn’t deliver a perceptible performance boost to the user.
I didn’t have any major complaints with its performance in my most common activities: web browsing, checking email, writing documents, and listening to music. Is this Mini-Note’s 1.2GHz VIA C7-M CPU fast enough for me?
Chances are you own at least one high tech, handheld gadget, whether it be an iPod, iPhone, PSP, or other device capable of playing back movies. It's also a safe bet to say you probably don't look forward to transcoding your favorite flicks into a compatible format, particularly when dealing with HD content. That's what makes CyberLink's achievement so noteworthy.